The first, and perhaps most important step to making the best wine is to source the best grapes. And to source the best grapes, we look at a variety of characteristics that make our grapes unique. First, we focus on the varietals best suited for our vineyards. For the White Label and “Les Sommets” Black Label wines, we source classic Bordeaux-varietals such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Malbec from the Napa Valley. For our Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir wines, we source from vineyards located Sonoma’s Russian River Valley. These varietals benefit from the Napa Valley’s unique patterns. On a daily basis, sunshine fills the days and helps bring the grapes to maturity, while cool fog pushes northward from the San Pablo bay in the evenings to cool the grapes, preserving their acidity. This day-night temperature variance can be as many as 40 degrees Fahrenheit. The growing season in Napa is also long and steady, with generally warm dry weather from mid-May all the way through the end of October. Our weather was made for grape growing. Equally important to grape growing is soil type. Napa Valley is an incredibly diverse appellation from a soil perspective; there are 33 different soil series covering 6 of the world’s 12 soil orders. For Les Belles Collines, we focus on selecting vineyards situated on high-drainage, low-vigor soils. Vine stress results in more flavorful wines, and as a result, better wine. These factors – climate, weather, and soil – are often referred to by the French as “terroir”. Terroir is the foundation of great wine, and we work with vineyards which display the terroir we feel can be made into the best wine.